I never wanted children. Until I did want them, then I really wanted them! I was working as a middle school teacher at that time and it seemed that every time I turned around, one of my coworkers was being induced, having an episiotomy, vacuum extraction, c-section, etc. Having witnessed the birth of my sister in 1998, fast and unmedicated, and knowing that I myself was born at home (though accidentally!) I just couldn't bring myself to believe all these things were as "necessary" as they are being made out to be.
Then I met read the blog of a fellow alum from my college who had just had a home birth. I was positive from that moment that is what I wanted. That was three months before I was even pregnant.
As soon as I had a positive pregnancy test in February, I was on the phone with a CPM who came recommended to me by another home birth mama in my church. We met for the first time at 9 weeks. I loved our hour or more long monthly appointments where her focus was reserved for only me! I loved that I had the responsibility to research and decide which tests and procedures were right for me during this pregnancy.
At 5 months I started taking Bradley Method classes and was faithful to do the exercises and relaxation practice.
Just before 8 months I started to have some bleeding. Not a ton, but concerning. The midwife and her apprentice (who was almost completed with her CPM certification as well) came for our home visit. She didn't want to check me but rather asked for me to come the following week to her office to be checked out due to the bleeding. That would have been Monday, October 6. On Thursday, I was at a LLL meeting with my best friend who was two weeks behind me in her pregnancy. I remember telling her I was going to sit in a chair rather than the floor because I was feeling some low "pressure."
On Friday, October 3 at 3am, I thought my baby kicked me super hard on my pubic symphasis.
Except I knew that his head was down there. That got me up. I walked, lay on the couch, got a drink, then decided around 4 to get into the tub. The tub just annoyed me because our bath is small and it wouldn't reach my belly.
When I got out around 5 my husband called the midwive. I heard her say "Oh. OH!" She was on vacation for the first time in 3 years! But she sent her apprentice. She arrived around 7am. I was already sidelying in bed, vocalizing and practicing relaxation between rather intense contractions.
The apprentice said, "Girl, we have to talk." According to everything I was only 35.5 weeks. Everything except one ultrasound I had done at 20 weeks (twins run in both families. I NEEDED to know there was one baby in there) It had me dated at 37 weeks! Hooray for that u/s or I would have been on my way to the hospital. Well, maybe. I was already 7cm (the ONE VE I allowed) and by 8am I was pushing!!! Mother led pushing. No one screaming at me to P-U-S-H or counting or any of that.
At 9:36 am I was holding my 7lb, 15oz, 20.5in baby boy in my arms. As soon as he heard me talking to him, he quieted down and just started to take it in. I had a short cord, so he couldn't reach to nurse until the placenta came out. I don't even remember how long that was.
The apprentice and a midwife from a neighboring town who came to supervise (but arrived after the birth because it was so fast) took care of all the clean up while I took a nice long herbal bath with my baby. My doula took care of making a meal and I spent the remainder of the day in bed with my baby and my husband, now a family of three.
For the record, I was so impressed with how well the Bradley Method worked that a year later, I certified to teach it. I've been doing so for nearly 2 years now.
Thank you so much for sharing!!!!!!!!